Camp News

Our Continued Response to COVID-19


As our world goes through unprecedented times, we have been thinking about you and dreaming of welcoming your children and families to camp. Our year-round staff, summer staff, and board of directors have been praying- praying for our collective health, safety, and happiness; praying that this will resolve well and quickly so we can return together to our home away from home this summer.

As camp leadership, we have an obligation to prepare responsibly for the summer of 2020 and to communicate with you about those plans. While our plans are evolving and ever-changing, we want to share with you both where we stand today and some insight into our approach. While we are never able to know what the future holds, and this feels more apparent now than ever, we have always been committed to maintaining the mission of Bear Creek Camp of strengthening individuals and communities through experiences of exploration, celebration, and growth in God’s creation.

One of the most helpful resources I’ve found during this time has been some tips from psychologist Doreen Marshall for taking care of personal mental health in the face of uncertainty:
• Separate what is in your control from what is not.
• Challenge yourself to stay in the present.
• Stay connected and reach out if you need more support.
• Get outside in nature.

I’d like to use the tips above to frame the following information about the summer.

Separate what is in your control from what is not.

Will Summer Camp at Bear Creek Camp happen this summer?

We certainly hope so! We hope for the best, and still we realize that we must simultaneously plan for a variety of scenarios. We’re utilizing the best information we have from government sources, Lutheran Outdoor Ministries and the American Camp Association. At this point, we feel there are enough reasons to continue to plan for the summer together. If permitted to proceed, we know the summer of 2020 will be the most important camp season in our children’s lives. New levels of stress, anxiety, and lack of social connections will necessitate the genuine face-to-face interactions, time in the outdoors, silly fun, and community that only camp can provide.

Challenge yourself to stay in the present.

One of the most important skills we learn and teach at Bear Creek Camp is the ability to think on our feet and plan for the unexpected. So while we continue to be present, we are also strategizing around a variety of possible outcomes for the summer.
• If we need to start late, we will make every effort to adjust.
• If we need to run a shorter season, we will make every effort to adjust.
• If we need to adapt specific programming (such as off-site trips), we will adjust.
• If camp must be canceled or we need to make changes to our summer program, we will work to rebuild BCC looking forward to the fall, winter, and spring retreat season and summer 2021.
• If public authorities permit us to hold camp at a time when regular life has resumed, but the virus is not completely contained, we will exhaust all efforts and resources to implement the best medical practices to keep our campers and families safe.

Stay connected and reach out if you need more support.

Cultivating community is one of the most cherished values of Bear Creek Camp. Having only been here a few months, I have seen for myself that while community is important during the time here at camp, these life-long friendships are even stronger beyond the camp gates. We are here for you and your family. Connect with us, share how we can support you and your family.

Thank you for your on-going partnership. We will continue to share more as we know more. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions.

Your opinions, thoughts, and ideas matter; please get in touch with whatever is on your mind. I hope you all have some opportunity to Get outside in nature and I look forward to when we can all do that together here at BCC.

In Christ,

Collin Grooms
Executive Director

Direct Thrivent Choice Dollars Before March 31st!


Dear Thrivent Members of our BCC Community,

Your Thrivent Choice dollars are an opportunity for you to make a difference during this challenging time. Please take a moment to allocate your Thrivent Choice dollars to support the ongoing ministry here at Bear Creek Camp.

Last year through Thrivent Choice Dollars, you provided nearly $17,000 to support the mission of helping youth and families explore, celebrate and grow in God’s creation. If you have recently allocated your Thrivent Choice Dollars to BCC – Thank You!

The allocation deadline is March 31st, 2020. It only takes a few minutes to direct your personal Thrivent Choice dollars to Bear Creek Camp. To direct your dollars, please visit before the March 31st deadline or follow the step-by-step instructions provided by Thrivent attached to this email. When you direct your dollars, select or search for BEAR CREEK CAMP as the qualifying organization.

Thrivent Choice Dollars and Thrivent Action Teams make a huge impact on the ministries you choose to support. We are grateful for our partnership with Thrivent through you.

In today’s changing world, there are so many ministry choices to support, including your own congregation. We are thankful for your prayerful consideration in allocating your gifts to the work of Bear Creek Camp.

Gala Update


In light of the current global situation, we are making the decision to cancel the Campfires & Cocktails Gala for 2020. We know that many of you were making plans to join us on April 18th and through this challenging time the ministry of Bear Creek Camp will continue to rely upon your support.

While we are unable to hold the in-person event on April 18th, we are developing ways to continue to use the day to celebrate the Bear Creek Camp community and support our upcoming summer camp programs. To learn more about these future opportunities please connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and by signing up for our email list.

We appreciate the support of the Bear Creek community through many changing seasons over the last nearly 50 years. We cannot predict exactly what lies on the other side of this challenging time. We go forward confident in the knowledge that the BCC Family has always met and exceeded the needs of our organization in support of our shared mission of building a better world by exploring, celebrating, and growing together in God’s creation.

Please mark your calendar for May 1, 2021 for the next Campfire & Cocktails Gala!